ALGIERS – Marshal Thomas Robert Bugeaud, responsible for the deaths of thousands of Algerians during the French colonization of Algeria, is especially renowned for having “invented the gas chambers”, said Jean Michel Aphatie, French political journalist.
Speaking during a program recently broadcast by a French channel, Jean Michel Aphatie argued that this person “invented the gas chambers”, used later, particularly, by Hitler’s Germany as part of the Nazi genocidal program.
Uprising against the baptism of an avenue in Paris named after Marshal Bugeaud, he recalled that this character had put in place in Algeria military strategies which “scandalized everyone”.
“We burned villages, we killed people,” he said, deploring the marshal’s use of “enflame”: a technique which consists in asphyxiating refugees inside a cave .
“Bugeaud has locked up women and children, whether they were combatants or not, in caves, light the fire in front of the cave and everyone dies by asphyxiation,” he said.
According to this journalist, the colonization of Algeria “was terribly bloody” and “terrifying” to the point that “even the French Minister of Defense, at the time, dissociated himself from Bugeaud”.
“There were even articles in the French and European press, everyone was scandalized,” he added.
Jean Michel Aphatie regrets, today, that this marshal who used the technique of “scorched earth” during the colonization of Algeria has several statues or street named after him in his memory, especially in Paris.
He also stressed the importance of assuming responsibility before history.
Since Tuesday, two young artists are at the origin of an action of unbolting of the statue of the marshal in Périgueux.